Advisor Group, one of the nation’s largest networks of independent financial advisory firms, appointed Steve Chipman as senior vice president of strategic acquisitions.

Advisor Group – which is comprised of SagePoint Financial, FSC Securities Corp., Woodbury Financial and Royal Alliance – serves more than 5,000 advisors and oversees approximately $160 billion in client assets.

As head of strategic acquisitions, Chipman will lead Advisor Group’s efforts to attract broker-dealers interested in joining a well-capitalized industry partner with scale to help them grow.

He will work with Jamie Price, Advisor Group’s president and CEO, and the four firm presidents, and will report directly to Jeff Auld, the president and CEO of SagePoint Financial.

In his new role, Chipman says he wants to “help establish a dialogue with these firms and partner with them to maintain their unique cultures while giving them access to industry-leading products, technology and compliance support to enable them to do what they do best – foster their close advisor relationships and help their advisors grow.”

The appointment of Chipman comes on the heels of major platform changes that aim to drive organic growth firmwide.

According to Price, Chipman will help Advisor Group implement its inorganic growth strategy.

“As compliance and technology costs continue to rise, firms without scale are challenged to invest in the discretionary initiatives that are critical to maintain the competitiveness of their offering,” Price said in a statement. “Steve is the right person to help us identify and partner with these firms and give them the freedom to focus on growing their businesses.”

Chipman has 30 years of experience in the financial services industry. Currently he is president and CEO of Foothill Securities, where he’s been for nearly 11 years.

In August 2016, Foothill Securities was acquired by Securities America. At the time, Chipman said increasing compliance costs, such as those associated with the new Department of Labor fiduciary rule, reinforced the decision to find a buyer.

“Having served as the CEO of a mid-sized financial services firm combined with my experience serving financial services firms at a large correspondent clearing firm, I am intimately familiar with the challenges they face keeping up with the growing expenses and risks associated with running a broker-dealer,” Chipman said in a statement. “With the continued heightened regulatory environment and impending DOL implementation, now is great time to evaluate how best to seize the opportunities that will be available to firms that are well positioned for such change.”

Chipman also recently completed a four-year term as a member of the Board of Directors of the Financial Services Institute (FSI), from 2012 through 2016. He’s also served on the District One FINRA Committee for six years. Additionally, he served on the FINRA Regulatory Advisory Council and the SIFMA Membership Committee.

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